Google Case Law, and why it doesn’t matter…

Whenever Google launches a product there is a huge brouhaha over in the blogosphere (There. I used the stupid word.) and people go nuts about how it is going to be the next big thing. I am not the clean one and am as much to blame as any one else for being a fanboy. However, when Google launched the free legal case law I was hardly excited.

I was transported back to the days when I was so happy at the launch of Google Patents that I almost predicted doom for patent database providers. Heck, I even sent them an email with features I thought would have been easy to implement.

Little did I know that it would turn out to be some time pass project for some one bored of regular work at Google. Sure the tool is great, but the limited coverage and search make it almost useless, when Google, using its immense technological prowess could have brought patents to everyone with very little incremental work. But then I guess the team that worked on it got shifted to some more important stuff and the project now sits there like a tool which I use only to read patents – and not search them. What a waste I tell you!!

Sleep in peace Lexis Nexis – there is no battle brewing on your home turf!

Office 2010 – worth it??

Anyone who knows me decently well, knows my hatred for all things MS on one hand, and the extreme love for MS Office on the other. I think that Office is one of the most useful piece of software ever written.

Anyway, the generous folks at MS were good enough to give me a copy of the Technical Preview of Office 2010 sometime back. I started using it almost ten days back, and so far I have been pretty pleased. I was never a huge fan of Office 2007, as I was never comfortable with the ribbon. However, Office 2007 is the standard install at ISB, and having gotten used to the ribbon over the last three months, it was not too difficult to transition to Office 2010. I did not install the newer version of Outlook, and from what I have read, it seems to be a major improvement. So this is in no way a complete review.

Most of Office 2010 is pretty similar to the previous version, but there are a few enhancements that I particularly like.

  1. Excel Sparklines – create good looking graphs in cells easily. Minimal formatting, but immensely useful for dashboard kind of stuff.
  2. Insert Screenshot – immensely useful! How many times did we have to do Print Scrn to paste pics from other widows. Kiss goodbye to such troubles. The new office suite gives immense control on the kind of screen shots you can include.
  3. Advanced Picture Tools – from a damn cool background removal tool, to advanced Photoshop like features, this is a a major improvement.
  4. More Smart Art than the 2007 version, and pretty useful ones.
  5. The older Office button has been replaced by a much more useful Office tab with control over printing etc.

On the negative bits, it is quite slower on launch than 2007, and the online help has not been updated to reflect extra options.

On the whole though, I like this better than 2007 edition, and hopefully they will have some more additional features before the final launch.

Some people just don’t learn

After the Vista fiasco, I hoped Microsoft would learn. But guess what – they haven’t!!

The new Windows 7 is all set to be released in 6 different versions. Aren’t we all pissed with the nonsense?? Don’t you get it?? The Home Premium version, which would set you back by USD 260, does not offer Remote Desktop. Are you f$$$ing kidding me?? And don’t even get me started about the Starter version that will only allow three apps concurrently. So AntiVirus, Music Player, FireFox, and… wait. You have reached a limit and can’t run Word. Bummer.

Let me spell it out for you folks – let there be a single version. Now stop smoking that thing you borrowed from Phelps, and chant with me.

One Version to rule them all, One Version to find them,
One Version to bring them all and in the darkness bind them!!

Q10 rocks!!

This is the first time I am writing my B-School essays using this great full screen text editor and it is mind blowing. I wish I had used it earlier. Simple, effective, and free. Minimizes all distractions!!

Highly recommended. Download here.